On a trip to Ethiopia in the 1990s, I met with Prime Minister Meles Zenawi to try to persuade him to stop jailing journalists. Since Meles’s guerrillas had ousted a repressive Soviet-backed dictatorship a few years before, there had been an explosion of exuberant and sometimes wildly inaccurate little newspapers, many of them attacking Meles.
While vote counting continues for Indonesia’s recently concluded election, reports have come out that incumbent, Joko “Jokowi” Widodo already enjoys a comfortable lead over former general and rival, Prabowo Subianto, at least according to the unofficial results.
Indonesia pulled off a complex yet peaceful election across its vast – and ethnically diverse – island territory this week, cementing its place as a democratic beacon in a sea of authoritarian governments, analysts say.
But the world's biggest Muslim-majority nation still faces a spike in militant Islam and myriad other challenges.
Tomorrow, Indonesian’s will go to the ballot box. For the first time in the country's history, the president, vice president, and members of the People's Consultative Assembly (MPR), will be elected on the same day with over 190 million eligible voters. 16 parties will be participating in the elections nationally, with four participating for the first time.
A coup leader triumphs as a civilian prime minister, an alliance of parties unite to stop him, or a parliamentary deadlock forces another political crisis – the outcome of Thailand's disputed election remains undecided a week after the poll.
So, what next? Here are the possible scenarios for how the election could play out.
Tomorrow, 24 March 2019, is a day that will forever be etched in the history books. Tomorrow, Thais will choose who they want to lead them to glory or perhaps drag the country down to damnation.
A high-speed train that glides from an expanded coastal airport handling 60 million passengers toward cavernous new stations in Bangkok. An infrastructure blitz that takes Thailand’s economy to new heights.
When Aung San Suu Kyi and her National League of Democracy (NLD) party won the general elections in 2015, a new wave of hope swept Myanmar. Previously under a military junta for almost 50 years from 1962 to 2011, Nobel Peace Prize winner Suu Kyi and her cohort represented the change the country so badly needed; a shift from military dictatorship to a functioning democracy.
Ever since the military junta gained power in 2014, it has promised on numerous occasions that democracy will return to Thailand and fresh elections will be held.
A surprise surge in Thailand’s economic growth could sway the country’s military government to stick to a plan for fresh elections early next year.